Fewer polling stations than in 2019, but more accessible 06:02 in the Interior This year, 97 percent of all polling stations are accessible to people in wheelchairs. Four years ago that was still 92.5 percent.

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Fewer polling stations will be available in next Wednesday’s elections than four years ago. An analysis by the NOS of the polling station addresses shows that the national average decrease is 4.5 percent. But there are regional differences.

Ten of the twelve provinces surrender polling stations. Limburg and Utrecht have 8 percent less. Zeeland and South Holland are hardly inferior. Drenthe is the only province where a small increase can be seen.

If we zoom in on individual municipalities, the differences become greater. Where Assen is going from 25 to 36 polling stations, an increase of no less than 44 percent, nearby Veendam is going down from 17 to 9, a decrease of 47 percent. Nissewaard also loses a lot: 18 of the 44 polling stations will disappear there, a decrease of 41 percent.

A spokesperson for the municipality of Veendam says he is not afraid that fewer people will vote as a result. The number of polling stations was reduced for the first time in the parliamentary and municipal elections in corona time, because not all polling stations “could meet the requirements set out in the temporary electoral law”.

It turned out that the municipality had sufficient coverage with nine polling stations. “There have also been few or no reactions from residents,” said the spokesman.

These are the municipalities that lose relatively the most polling stations:

In general, it is striking that the decrease in polling stations is mainly seen in urban areas. Outside the Randstad conurbation, the number of offices is increasing slightly.

These are the municipalities that add relatively the most polling stations:

We also looked at the WOZ value of the houses in the areas where the polling stations are disappearing. We did this by checking for each polling station whether it is located in an area where the average WOZ value is below or above the average WOZ value for the province in question.

If we look at the national figures, it is striking that the number of polling stations in areas with an above-average property value fell slightly, by 1.8 percent. However, the decrease in polling stations in areas with a below-average property value is much stronger.

There, the number of polling stations fell by 7 percent. Fewer polling stations were therefore canceled in neighborhoods with expensive homes than in neighborhoods with cheaper homes.

Wheelchair accessible

The good news is that more polling stations are accessible to people in wheelchairs. In 2019 that was still 92.6 percent, this year it has risen to 97 percent. Hof van Twente is making the biggest leap: from 22 percent wheelchair accessible to 100 percent.

Tholen performs worst in this respect, where only 53 percent of the polling stations are accessible to wheelchair users. Other municipalities with a low score are Oldebroek (60 percent) and Houten (65 percent).

The province of Flevoland is 100 percent wheelchair accessible. Groningen, Friesland and Drenthe with more than 99 percent almost completely. Limburg scores the lowest with 95 percent.

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